Christmas Holiday - William Somerset Maugham

1939 - William Heinemann Ltd, London - First Edition
First edition of one of Maugham’s darker tales, Paris, the Russian Revolution, a lost generation and self-destruction.

The basis for the 1944 film noir, a highlight for director Robert Siodmak, starring Deanna Durbin and Gene Kelly.
 
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Price HK$ 1,600



Vile Bodies - Evelyn Waugh

1930 - Chapman &, London - First Edition
First edition of Waugh’s second novel, with the wonderful pictorial title page.

‘In the years following the First World War a new generation emerges, wistful and vulnerable beneath the glitter. The Bright Young Things of 'twenties Mayfair, with their paradoxical mix of innocence and sophistication, exercise their inventive minds and vile bodies in every kind of capricious escapade. In a quest for treasure, a favourite party occupation, a vivid assortment of characters hunt fast and furiously for ever greater sensations and the fulfilment of unconscious desires.’ [Penguin]
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



Decline and Fall - An Illustrated Novelette - Evelyn Waugh

1928 - Chapman &, London - First Edition, First Issue
‘Anarchic and experimental... Surely one of the wittiest and most original of first novels. Champagne to the particular.’ - Cyril Connolly, The Modern Movement.

First edition, first issue, of Evelyn Waugh’s first novel. Illustrated with six full-page line drawings by Waugh.

After the book was rejected for indecency by the publisher of his earlier biography of Rossetti, Waugh offered the manuscript to Chapman & Hall, but he did so while his father, who was the managing director of the firm, was away on holiday. The acting-director agreed to publish the novel. Arthur Waugh returned to London to discover that his son was his firm's newest author. When Arthur Waugh's biography was published three years later, however,
Decline and Fall and Vile Bodies, the two novels published under his directorship of Chapman & Hall, were not mentioned. The indelicate material, which Martin Stannard has since revealed in fact did go through some "taming" revisions, was perhaps a bit too much for the elder Waugh. 
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Price HK$ 9,500